Juhani Tonteri holds top spot after second day of qualifying at 46th Brunswick Ballmaster Open

    12/31/15

    2016 European Bowling Tour #1

    Tonteri nips Pasi Uotila by two pins to lead the 176-player field after 4/18 squads with 1396, or a 232.67 average; Olli Pakonen misses the first 300-game and a 3.000 Euro bonus by a 4-pin; No. 44 score to beat to advance is currently 1181 (196.83)

    2016EBT01JuhaniTonteri.jpg2016EBT01PasiUotila2.jpg Juhani Tonteri (pictured left) rolled games of 268, 220, 195, 220, 270 and 223 to nip Pasi Uotila (right) by two pins, 1396 to 1394, and to take the lead in the 46th Brunswick Ballmaster Open as 176 players have completed at least one six-game series Wednesday at Tali Bowling Center in Helsinki, Finland.

    With just 4 of 18 squads in the books, the field consists of 174 Finnish bowlers, German-Finnish Patricia Luoto (40th, 1202) and Russia's Alexander Medveditskov (93rd, 1101). Tonteri averaged 232.67 in squad 3 to overtake the lead.

    2016EBT01PerttuJussila.jpg2016EBT01MagnusLonnroth.jpgThree-time Ballmaster Open champion Uotila slipped to second place and was followed by fellow team world champion (2013) Perttu Jussila (left), who was mere four pins behind Tonteri with 1392, including games of 225, 203, 259, 226, 225 and 254.

    Osku Palermaa, a 13-time European Bowling Tour titlist and 5-time PBA champion, slipped to fourth place with 1369, while Jari Ratia rounds out the top 5 with 1356.

    Squad 4 leader Magnus Lönnroth (right) toppled 1354 pins to leap into sixth place. He started his series with back-to-back 248 games and added 215, 243, 213 and a low game of 187, an average of 225.67.

    2016EBT01OlliPakonen.jpg2015BWCSannaPasanen2.jpgOlli Pakonen (left) missed the first 300-game of the tournament and a 3.000 Euro bonus by mere one pin. After starting squad 4 with 253 and 221, Pakonen reeled off 11 consecutive strikes before he left a 4-pin on his last shot, which ruined his bid for the first perfecto of the event. Pakonen closed with 167, 192 and 199 to sit in 10th place with 1331.

    Finnish national team member Sanna Pasanen (right) is the best of 19 women in the field so far with 1324 total, including 48 pins women's handicap, good for 12th place.

    Ari Tiainen held the 44th and last place to advance to the finals with 1181 or an average of 196.83. For the records, the score to make the cut in 44th place in last year's Ballmaster Open was 1342 (223.67 average).

    Qualifying takes a two-day break and commences on Saturday, January 2, with squads 5 and 6 scheduled to start at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Eastern European Time (EET).

    2015BallmasterLogo_small.jpg Since its inception in the year 2000, the European Bowling Tour kicks off with Brunswick Ballmaster Open in Helsinki, Finland. The 46th edition of Europe's most prestigious bowling tournament will kick off the 17th EBT season from Tuesday, December 29, 2015 through Sunday January 10, 2016 at 36-lane Tali Bowling Center.

    The BBO is the first of three "EBT Platinum" events this season, the highest of the four EBT categories, and offers total prize money of 103.300 Euro, including all extra prizes, with 13.000 Euro going to the winner, 9.000 to the runner-up and 6.000 and 4.000 to the third and fourth place finishers, respectively. Low to cash is 54th place, worth 1.000 Euro.

    Qualifying (six games, unlimited re-entries) starts on Dec. 29 with squads 1 & 2 and concludes Jan. 9 with squad 18 followed by the ultimate one-game Desperado Squad slated for 8 p.m. Eastern European Time (EET - one hour ahead of CET).

    Women will receive 8 pins handicap each game (up to 292 - maximum score is 300), an equality handicap provided to women in all EBT events.

    Total 54 players - the top 44 from the overall qualifying standings, the top 6 from a separate leaderboard of squads 1-8 who are not among the top 44 and the top 4 from the Desperado Squad - qualify for the finals. There is no bonus for the qualifying leaders this year.

    All 54 finalists bowl two blocks of five games with the top 12 advancing to the round robin match play portion. Those 12 bowl further 11 games of round robin match play (no position round) with the previous pinfall total carried over. During match play, players receive 30 bonus pins for winning a match and 15 pins each in the event of a tie.

    The top 4 players after 21 games including bonus pins determine the champion in a traditional stepladder final. The No. 4 seed meets the No. 3 in the opening match. The winner takes on the No. 2 seed for the right to bowl the top seed for the title and the 13.000 Euro top prize.

    Whether the 46th Brunswick Ballmaster Open will offer a World Bowling Tour and Professional Bowlers Association Tour title is still pending as World Bowling, bowling's governing body, has not yet published a schedule for the 2016 WBT season.

    2016EBTLogo_small.jpg After the withdrawal of the Russian Open and the cancelation of the Istanbul Open, the 2016 European Bowling Tour currently consists of 16 tournaments in 11 countries featuring three "Platinum" events, three "Gold", four "Silver" and six "Satellite" events. All tournaments together offer total prize fund of roughly 850.000 Euro.

    The top 50 men and the top 50 women in each event receive ranking points. Those points will be tabulated throughout the season to determine the top 12 men and top 12 women, who will compete in the 10th EBT Masters February 27, 2017, at Dolfijn Bowling in Tilburg, Netherlands.

    Photos by Seija Lankinen.

     


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    2016 Brunswick Ballmaster Open - Qualifying Standings after Squad 4/18


    Top 44, top 6 from a separate leaderboard of squads 1-8 who are not among the top 44 and the top 4 from the Desperado Squad will advance to the finals on Sunday, Jan. 10.